UFC #4 ranked lightweight Conor McGregor has just signed an agreement for a fight with #2 ranked lightweight contender Dustin Poirier, according to MacLife. McGregor, who is a former UFC lightweight/featherweight double champion, has fought Poirier before much earlier in both men’s careers, defeating him by technical knockout in the first round in 2014. That fight took place at featherweight, however. Both men would find success moving up. McGregor fought a duology with Nate Diaz, then won the belt from Eddie Alvarez. Poirier would battle his way to winning the interim lightweight strap with wins over Anthony Pettis, Justin Gaethje, Eddie Alvarez and Max Holloway.
Conor McGregor and Dustin Poirier: Road to the Rematch
The story of the rematch has seen a few twists and turns. Initially the bout was mooted as a charity exhibition match in December this year after both McGregor and Poirier found frustration with negotiations with the UFC. However, in response to the interest in the fight, the UFC eventually came to terms with both. The fight will be an official pro bout to be held next year, January 23rd at UFC 257.
UFC president Dana White has stated that the fight will not be fought for the UFC lightweight title. The title is theoretically held by Khabib Nurmagomedov, who holds wins over both men. However, Nurmagomedov publicly retired after his victory over Justin Gaethje earlier this year. Despite this, White maintains that Nurmagomedov is still UFC lightweight champion.
Nevertheless, even if this fight isn’t for the belt itself, the winner would certainly have a very strong argument for the next title shot at the UFC’s most popular division. McGregor comes off of a victory over Donald Cerrone this year. Poirier comes off of a victory over Dan Hooker, also this year. McGregor still maintains the powerful, accurate boxing and strategic kicking that took him his victory in his last outing. Poirier, on the other hand, has massively improved both his striking defence and offense since 2014. This fight will prove crucial for the legacies of both men.
Embed from Getty Images